Fifty Fathoms by Blancpain has been the archetypal modern diver’s watch since its creation sixty years ago, in 1953. In 2013, two new models join the legendary linage that has earned iconic status over the years. The vintage-inspired Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe presented in men’s and women’s version incorporates the latest developments of the watch industry, like the silicon balance-spring.
Blancpain’s Bathyscaphe diver’s watches were introduced in the late 1950s as models for both men and women and were inspired by the underwater exploration of Swiss adventurer Jacques Piccard. The new Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe offers a reinterpretation of these two models, and features the integration of the latest technical innovations with the spirit of the legends of the past.
Various elements of the 2013 version point back to the first editions- for instance; the contours are as sharply defined as those of their predecessors. The hands feature the traditional look of the vintage watches and the date appears through a dedicated aperture. The new models incorporate modern Blancpain calibres distinguished for their robustness and reliability. The heart of each of the mechanical self-winding movements beats at 28,800 vibrations per hour. Blancpain’s effort to constantly improve the calibres is evident from the nonmagnetic silicon balance-spring that is visible through a sapphire crystal case-back. Apart from its corrosion-resistant properties, silicon is extremely resistant to wear and natural ageing.
Another novel feature of Blancpain is the graduated scale in Liquidmetal; an amorphous metal alloy that avoids any deformation and ensures perfect bonding with the ceramic bezel insert. The hardness of these two materials serves to enhance the bezel’s scratch resistance. Each model is equipped with a unidirectional bezel activated by turning it counter-clockwise in one-minute increments. During dives, the seconds serves as an operating indicator, while a contrasting dial and luminescent gold hour-markers ensure optimal readability. The new Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe is naturally water-resistant to around 300 metres. Each model is fitted with a triple-loop NATO strap. This broad and extremely practical wristband is as reliable and robust as the watch itself.